Woo hoo! Yesterday about midday Geoff and I got an email from the The National Lottery saying we’d secured a £10,000 Awards for All grant!
Some good news!
I saw the email come in but was at work so no real way to celebrate this till later however I definitely had a skip in my step and a wee secret smile to myself the rest of my work day. News was quickly shared round the team.
This is the next serious piece of funding secured (after £6,500 from the Architectural Heritage Fund). Hopefully it is the first of many and it is not everyone who gets this funding, so it is a great boost to the considered viability of our project.
The grant is to contract someone in a Development Manager role, for perhaps 6-10 months, to take forward our designs for the building, ideally to progress the building works (if funding for that is secured) and to develop the uses and hires.
What is really exciting is that this fund is a gateway fund to other National Lottery grants. If you don’t secure and successfully use the Awards for All grant, you have no route to the other bigger pots. It doesn’t guarantee access to those other future funding pots but if is a necessary step in that journey.
There is a job spec to be worked up now and recruitment to be done. Guess we might be recruiting as Portobello Central Ltd as there is no need to wait for the SCIO approval but we’ll need to think about financial structures carefully now as we actually go to spend more serious money.
However before that all starts, let’s just take a moment to be celebrate this award and say well done team, thanks for the community support everyone else and thank you The National Lottery for believing in us!
P.S. This is the great thing about working with The National Lottery: have a good idea, set out your case, make clear you know what you are doing and the nice people at TNL listen and understand. They also move quickly. On Wednesday, I received an email asking me to confirm my date of birth by sending photo-id. That was done straightaway. Thursday, late morning, the phone rang while I was working in the garden – all messy and hot – “grant awarded, in your bank account next week”. Momentary disbelief, asked for news to be repeated and that was that. During the call, the email arrived.
The National Lottery really does believe in people.